1. Christian Foellmann

    Yesterday I started the renewed evaluation of the whole spectrum of plugins for Custom Fields and just like I remembered it is still the Wild West.

    Everyone is doing it in post_meta and even the good ones don’t give me a feeling of sustainability.

    I always try to find a solution that will Make sense in two years and not be hopelessly outperformed by the next thing.

    The Field API would finally be the foundation for redesigning the Settings API.

    I really hope someone can pick this up and rise it from the ashes.

    I really appreciate all the time that all contributors put into the WP community. Especially in this case – Scott.


  2. Anh Tran

    Fields API is an ambiguous project as it affects all the things that relate to data in WordPress. And data is the foundation of a CMS. But people are focusing on Gutenberg at the moment, which is the presentation layer of the CMS. In long term, I think Fields API will get its attention and be a high priority in WordPress.

    It’s sad that Scott is stepping down. He’s done a good job with that.


  3. Peter Knight

    The Fields API should have come before Gutenberg and the customizer so that the future of WordPress would have a stable base to pivot on. But now we have a two large projects that are evolving in problematic ways and it will hamstring WordPress for the next decade (that is, the customizer and gutenberg). Javascript development was the moment to look at WordPress’ mishmash code foundation and take a more sustainable approach as a whole new layer of code is added and it seems to me like we’ve blown it.

    It’s shiny object syndrome gone wrong, despite the best intentions of the developers who’ve put in a massive amount of work to make things happen in core which is no small feat. Someone with a sense vision should have steered this in a different way, but it’s become clear to me that the leadership is failing and falling for the wrong kind of aims.

    Take the perverse instinct to dominate in terms of market share and raise it to ridiculous levels. Take the longing to be a modern JS centric webapp that looks in total deference to how the big boys do things (Facebook and Google). And the sad irony is the contradiction there, trying to be a giant of the web while utterly failing to do what the behemoths do, which is to do things their own way.

    As WordPress transforms into a half baked React app that serves mangled code, compiled and built while denying normal users an comprehensible look in, it has totally forgotten what WordPress was and how it came to be. Attempting to be a giant while being too shy to be its own quirky self – a code base that could be easily played with with an API that was distinctly its own. Instead it is ashamed of its own PHP foundations and desperately wants to conform to what’s happening elsewhere. It is now instead shaping itself in the image of projects pushed out by developers working for corporate giants who are merely looking to impress each other with their optimisations as they ignore what damage their employers are doing to the wider web and the fabric of society. And that thing that takes hold of these developers, that constant urge to look for better technical solutions with ever more complex tools mandates that new projects are started and old ones abandoned, because you can’t impress with mere maintenance of a project.

    All this to me is antithetical to what WordPress has come to mean to me over the last decade. It now seems like it’s in a hurry to cast away its roots. So in a rush we are, despite enjoying market dominance, we never even considered the ramifications of the code we’re pushing out today. We have Gutenberg that is going to break hundreds of thousands of lines of code written by thousands of developers and self-taught webmasters. We have the customizer that shovels so much clientside code down the throat of a users’ browsers that it has become the most sluggish, slow loading part of the UI while not even offering a clear way of intersecting back with Gutenberg. And it’s really painful to write that as someone who was a big fan of the customizer and has spent hundreds of hours creating custom functionality in the customizer.

    In hastily embracing javascript and the REST API it seems like not one thought was spent thinking about how we could port over WordPress biggest strengths in terms of how the PHP code base empowered developers of all levels. A true market leader wouldn’t have tried to shoe horn what others are doing in terms of code, functions or features into the project. It would have decided how to be more of itself in a more modern way. Now WordPress is turning into something very different. It may continue to be the market leader, but it will have lost some of its DNA along the way. And it’s a damn shame.


    • fwolf

      Your comment deeply mirrors my thoughts in a much calmer way.

      cu, w0lf.


    • Bernhard Gronau

      It’s sad as we build more and more complex projects based on WordPress but still miss out on a solid Field’s API that would make many things just more interoperable or would add options how we store data and still work with other Pluigns …

      I hope this get’s some awareness and traction! Thanks Scott Kingsley Clark that you tried it! It’s no shame to admit that things could have be done different – looking back this is always easier!



    • Peter Shaw

      Yes best comment I’ve read in months.
      Fields should have come first to provide logic and structure around data (which is essentially what a cms is about)

      Instead it’s been done completely arse about face, this mess will either cause a stack of wasted time, lead us into obscurity, or be walked back in time.


  4. Bastian

    After hundreds of hours of my time, I no longer believe I can effect change within WordPress core.

    So all this talk about “decisions are made by those who show up” is just feel-good speech after all.


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